Kansas families fear going hungry amidst shutdown

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Some Kansas families are living in fear, as the partial government shutdown threatens to take the food from their table. It’s day 31 of the shutdown, and with no end in sight, food assistance programs are starting to feel the impact. 

Crystal Corber of Topeka and her two daughters both rely on food stamps to eat. They just got their food stamp money early for February, but unless the shutdown ends, that will be the last of those benefits. 

“We’ve got to be very careful on what we do this month. Because some people look at it as they have extra, but that’s not the way it works out,” Corber said. “What I put in my fridge now has to last me for two months, and then you still don’t know what’s going to happen in March.” 

Corber said her family already has to stretch what they have. She often skips meals to make sure her kids can eat. The shutdown could push them to a breaking point. 

“Now it’s messing with, not just government jobs. Now you’re messing with people’s food. Our homes, our dinner, my kids eating,” Corber said.  

It’s not just families who are impacted. The Topeka Harvesters food pantry depends partly on money from the federal food stamp program.

Kimberley Gencur-Svaty is a Harvesters board member. She said they’re going to do everything they can to feed families in need, even without the funding. 

“We will continue to be here, we’ll continue to serve. And if the shutdown continues much beyond the February timeframe, Harvesters as an entity will be absorbing the cost of actually processing, distributing and packaging the food itself” 

The Corber family just wants to see the shutdown end. 

“You know, you vote for these people, you put them in thinking they’re going to do right by you. And now you’ve got to wonder in a month if you’re even going to have food in your house,” Corber said. 

The Topeka Harvesters said that if the shutdown continues, they’ll definitely be in need, so they’re asking anyone who can, to consider donating. If you want to make a donation to the Topeka Harvesters, you can go here

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